Gorman named inaugural Irwin Chair in Outstanding Nursing Practice
Geraldine Gorman has been named the inaugural Kathleen M. Irwin Endowed Clinical Chair in Outstanding Nursing Practice in the UIC College of Nursing. The appointment was effective Aug. 16.
The chair was established last year with a gift from G. Steven Irwin, MD, in accordance with the wishes of his late wife, Kathleen, a nurse, to support an outstanding clinical faculty member who is active in nursing practice.
Gorman, a clinical professor in the department of population health nursing science, has taught at the UIC College of Nursing since 2002 and maintained a clinical practice in hospice and palliative care throughout that time.
“It’s much easier to teach nursing if you practice nursing,” she said in a 2018 profile. “When I tell students how proud I am to be a nurse and how much I love the practice of nursing, it’s true and present.”
Gorman calls it a “privilege” to go into people’s homes to bear witness to their end-of-life experiences. She also leads students in community health clinical rotations in hospice settings.
“I am truly thankful to the Irwins for their transformational generosity, and I am thrilled to appoint Dr. Gorman to this very meaningful faculty position,” said Dean Eileen Collins.
“Through her classroom and clinical teaching, Dr. Gorman has shared with students the importance of integrating compassion and advocacy in the care of all patients.”
Gorman believes that nurses carry a “significant social mandate” to act in a way that’s beneficial to society. She is a passionate champion for social justice initiatives, volunteering her time to engage in prison outreach and primary prevention of war strategies. She leads students in clinical rotations to teach health education at the Cook County Jail and to greet asylum seekers at the South Loop Greyhound Station with the Chicago Immigrant Transit Assistance program.
Gorman received her BSN and PhD in nursing from Loyola University Chicago. In 2019, she received the Spirit of Ignatius Award from Loyola’s Niehoff School of Nursing in 2019, an award presented to an individual who best personifies curas personalis, meaning care for the whole person.
She has also received UIC’s Graduate Award for Excellence, UIC’s Teaching Recognition Program Award, UIC Nursing’s Judith Lloyd Storfjell Distinguished Practice Award and the Red Cross Hero Award.
– Deborah Ziff Soriano